When much of America gets cold...
How about a great little mid-winter adventure? This ride is aimed at our friends who live in those cold parts of North America where your motorcycles get put away for the winter and you yearn for sunny weather. Yes I'm talking those of you who live in Atlanta, Boise, Chicago, Detroit, Edmonton, Fargo, etc... you get it. Much of America is pretty cold in the winter. Gloomy too, except for the sunny southwest. So – that being said how does the idea of five days of Adventure Riding fun in the warm and sunny deserts of California and Nevada sound to you?
The desert is an awesome way to get out of the cold of winter for those of you who live in frigid environs. The centerpiece of our Mid-Winter Adventure is Death Valley, CA! From an attraction standpoint Death Valley is America’s second largest National Park, and December through March the temperatures average from 66 to 80ºF respectively and there's usually less than an inch of rainfall. Sound good so far?
So imagine this... it's the middle of January, it’s nearly 70ºF and you are riding the brand new BMW GS of your choice and heading out across the Mojave Desert to RawHyde's Base Camp Alpha and then on to such places as Death Valley's world famous racetrack or Bad Water... the lowest place in the western hemisphere at 287 feet below sea level. On top of that Dante’s View, Titus Canyon, Scotty’s Castle, and more all beckon you to visit.
Imagine six nights and five days in the incredible Mojave Desert, the rugged Panamint Valley, and amazing Death Valley. This magnificent adventure is fully supported with a knowledgeable guide, a sweep rider, a four-wheel drive support truck to carry the luggage and a professionally trained Chef who will provide sumptuous meals under the stars on camping nights, and otherwise we’ll dine at the local restaurants near our hotel..
Mid-Winter Adventure schedule:
Arrival at RawHyde. Join us in the late afternoon for orientation, a chance to spend some time with your fellow riders, and a great welcome dinner.
Accommodations – Rustic tent or bunkhouse at RawHyde.
To Base Camp Alpha–We head out through the high-desert to Red Rock Canyon for lunch. From there it is on to the famous Burro Schmidt Tunnel and the Mojave Mining District.
Accommodations Camp at Base Camp Alpha.
Layover day at Base Camp Alpha. Today you’ll have a chance to explore the magnificent Panamint Valley, the ghost town of Ballarat, the charcoal kilns of Wildrose and the Minietta Mine. Today’s riding will give you a glimpse into the rowdy and raucous life of hard rock miners during the late 1800s and early 1900s. A Panamint prospector’s life was a hard one, but the beauty of the harsh landscape captured many souls and even today a few hardy folks stay on, eking a living from the rocky landscape. There are several hundred miles of exploration opportunities in this amazing area… on road or off-road, whatever strikes your fancy.
Accommodations Camp at Base Camp Alpha.
Death Valley as few have ever seen it–we’ll enter via “the back way” 90 miles of incredibly beautiful back country riding await you on the only easy dirt road entrance to Death Valley. You’ll have a chance to visit the “racetrack” where boulders move mysteriously across the playa of a dry lake bed. On your exit from the racetrack you’ll have a chance to see Ubehebe Crater –the largest “steam crater” in the continental US. Created when groundwater managed to seep deep down into the earth and hit the super hot rock deep in the earth’s crust. The water turned to steam and the resulting explosion left a crater nearly a third of a mile deep.
Accommodations either a hotel in Death Valley (double occupancy) or camping
Death Valley is America’s second largest National Park. It has approximately 150 miles of paved road and over 1200 miles of dirt roads. Exploration is the name of the game today. We’ll with a run up to Dante’s View and then head to Titus Canyon which is a truly amazing off road experience. One of the dirt road treasures of Death Valley, it’s a place that few motorcyclists ever see–imagine a small Grand Canyon that’s open for riding. 30 miles in length and simply unbelievable in scenic value. Words don’t describe it adequately. If we have time toward the end of the day we’ll run north to Scotty’s Castle which is a wonderful mansion built at the turn of the 20th century by a wealthy Chicago businessman. All the materials were carted in on wagons… you’ll have to see it to believe it. It’s crazy and well worthwhile.
Accommodations either a hotel (double occupancy) or camping
Today we return to RawHyde via some of the best paved roads in the western US. We'll leave Death Valley early, and take one last look at it from Aguereberry Point. Aguereberry Point is on the western edge of Death Valley high in the Panamint Mountains. The view is beyond words.
From Aguereberry Point we'll head west on a mix of beat up asphalt roads and dirt until we reach the crown jewel of southern California's pavement. It's called Snake Road, and just as the name evokes this is one twisty road! It's Highway 178 from Lake Isabella, California to the floor of California's great Central Valley. We'll end our day with a 40 minute ride on Interstate 5 back to RawHyde HQ.
The Dakar Bar will be fully stocked, and a hot dinner awaits us. A good night's sleep and it’s back to the realities of life on Saturday with flights home, etc.
Accommodations Rustic tent or bunkhouse at RawHyde.